CLACTON has the best record in the county for learners passing their driving test first time, new figures show.

Data published by the Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency judges test centres across Essex on their pass rates for people taking their first driving test.

Clacton has the best record in Essex for first-time passers with a pass rate of just over 50 per cent between 2017 and 2018.

Of 1,792 people who took their first practical driving test at the test centre in Clacton, 911 were successful.

This was closely followed by a Chelmsford centre which has a first time pass rate of 42.9 per cent. In Colchester it was 39.1 per cent.

Mark Cole, chairman at the Colchester and District Driving Instructor’s Association, said it was not a surprise Clacton had the highest pass rate.

He runs A-DRIVE based in Manningtree, which also provides driving lessons in Clacton, Walton, Frinton, Brightlingsea and Harwich.

He said: “Clacton is a lot smaller than Colchester and when people drive in a smaller area they are repeatedly covering the same places and it’s not difficult to learn the layouts really easily.

“The downside to that is are only learning to pass a test as opposed to learning to drive, which is why I take my drivers in Clacton to Colchester and Ipswich.

“I want to take them to those places first to make sure I’m satisfied they are safe. If someone said they don’t like the roundabouts in Colchester and would rather drive in Clacton I would say no.”

Kieran Clarke works for the DVDS Learners driving school in Colchester.

Figures show that 1,214 people passed their test first time at the driving test centre in Colchester between 2017 and 2018.

He said some people tend to want to go to Clacton to take their tests because of the higher pass rate.

He said: “I would like to think the high pass rate in Colchester is to do with people having more lessons here.

“It’s much easier to pass here than it is in the middle of London. There was something like a 70 per cent pass rate in Scotland because of all the tiny places there.

“Maybe Clacton has a higher pass rate because there is a less complicated road system there. Some people from Colchester go to Clacton to take their test because of the higher pass rate.

“However we prefer people who live in Colchester to take their test in their home town. There are some awful country roads in Clacton.”

The DVDS Learners driving school helped 82-year-old grandma Josephine Sheeka pass her driving test in December.

Josephine had praised her kind and patient instructor, and said she would not have passed without her support.